PETERSEN MEDIA- Racing his way past Jason Meyers and Jonathan Allard at the Keller Auto Speedway on Friday night, Ryan Bernal would score his second career winged sprint car feature event win a night before a violent flip at the Peter Murphy Classic with the USAC West Coast 360 Series.
“It was great to get another winged win on Friday night, and we had certainly had a car that was capable of winning the race on Saturday night with the USAC Series,” Ryan Bernal said. “Traffic got really dicey and it resulted in me getting upside down in a big way.”
Making his first appearance at the Keller Auto Speedway on Friday night since picking up a win a few weeks back, Bernal would get his night started off by timing the Metal Works/Keizer Wheels/DMI backed No. 56 machine in sixth quickest.
Lining up in the second row of his heat race, the Hollister, CA product would tip-toe around the tricky Keller Auto Speedway surface as he would finish in the fourth spot and sneak into the night’s Dash.
By way of his seventh place finish, Bernal would grid the field from the fourth row of the 30-lap feature event. Taking a liking to the bottom of the speedway, Bernal would use a double file restart on the third lap to work into the second spot as he chased after the aforementioned Meyers and Allard.
Running very well in the third spot, Bernal would see an opening for second on the 18th lap, and he would seize the opportunity as he squeezed under Meyers getting into turn one. Once in second, Bernal would continue to work the bottom as he chased after Allard.
Pulling alongside of Allard on laps 23 and 24, Bernal would take command of the race on the 25th lap as he exited turn four. A caution on lap 26 would give him the clear track he needed as he held off Allard to score his second career winged sprint car feature event win.
Losing the wings and heading to the Thunderbowl Raceway in Tulare, CA for Saturday’s Peter Murphy Classic, Bernal would kick the night off by timing in 12th fastest in time trials.
Picking up the heat race win, Bernal would line up in the 12th spot for the scheduled 30-lap feature event. Following a red on the opening lap of the race, Bernal would make some big time headway on the restart as he was able to diamond off of turn two and work his way into the top-five.
Working into the second spot by the 12th lap, Bernal would surge into the lead on the 13th lap and begin pulling away from the field. Amidst dense traffic, contact would ensue with a slower car, and Bernal’s machine would flip violently down the front stretch on the 15th lap and his bid for a weekend sweep would come to a close as he escaped the wreckage uninjured.
“Our wreck on Saturday was one of the hardest hits that I have ever taken, and I really am thankful for the safety of our cars as well as the safety of the equipment that I am so thankful to have,” Bernal added. “I hate it for my guys to have a torn up racecar, but at least we were able to get one win over the weekend.”
Bernal and the Mike Phulps Motorsports team would like to thank Keizer Wheels, DMI, S&S Automotive, King Racing Products, Metal Works, Hoosier Racing Tires, Core Power, ART Chassis, Tri-L Manda